I’m taking over, bitches, because my twin is having issues writing his goddamn post.
So where’d I leave off? Oh yeah, me and that slayer were heading to their compound.
We drove along the Red Mountain freeway headed east and into an area I thought was reservation, but apparently not if these fuckers had a compound built on it. I mean, last I knew, we didn’t have a problem with the local Native Americans and they didn’t have a problem with us … well, with exception to that skinwalker I’d killed a while back, but no one really knows about that except Nico and Trent and that happened in Portland.
I kept one eye on the road and the other on the slayer. I knew driving right into Cabale territory wasn’t the brightest thing to do alone, but I couldn’t let them hold my girl captive either. I’d hoped they didn’t know Nico and I were an item, because then it’d be a trap, and that’d bring all sorts of bad news my way. Instead, I was hoping for the element of surprise. We’d see how that worked out. Shit didn’t usually roll in my favor.
“Where to next?” I asked.
“Take a left at the next light,” Mr. Vamp-killer replied. “It’s about five miles in.”
I nodded and made the turn when the light changed. “If you try anything stupid …”
“Yeah, I know, you’ll rip my heart out,” he said. “Trust me, I kind of like it attached and beating inside my chest.”
A chuckle left my lips. “Yeah, and I like my head attached. How about we agree to let each other live?”
He laughed outright. “Right, because you’re the nice one who doesn’t rip hearts out.”
My right brow cocked up. “What do you mean the nice one?”
“We know there are two of you,” he said. “Er, that you have a twin, anyways.”
“Okay, so I know I gave myself away with your partner there, but what all do you know about me and my twin?”
“Who by fire …” He looked ahead and pointed. “You might wanna pull over soon and let me drive in, unless you feel like dying the minute we stop.” His eyes met mine. “They’ll recognize what you are instantly. They’re bred to.”
“What’s bred to?” I asked and looked up the road.
“The guards,” he replied. “They’re Coveys, not quite vamps, but not quite human either, and with a mix of something canine to give them a more docile nature, though that shit didn’t quite work out right because they can be hard to control sometimes. Horrible sense of smell, though, so you’d be safe in the backseat.”
“Canine-ish with a bad sense of smell, eh?” I said. “Sounds like Dr. Frankenstein had too many bolts of lightning hit him.”
He rolled his eyes at me. “Either way, you might wanna stop soon.”
I pulled over to the side of the road and turned to him. “Okay, here’s the deal. I can’t let you go on the chance you’ll run back to base and tell all your little slayer buddies I’m here. I also can’t leave you here alone, so you got any ideas outside of me killin’ you?”
“You could take me with you. I’d be able to guide you around.”
“Or you could draw me a map of the compound,” I suggested.
“And then you’ll kill me,” he replied. “No way.”
I smiled, flashing fang in the process. “I was hoping you’d say that,” I said with a nod. “Get out of the truck.”
We both climbed out of Nico’s truck and he met me in front of it. “So, uh, you just gonna leave this sitting here? I mean, anyone could drive by and see it.”
I grinned and shook my head. “Not to worry there, Shep. I got it covered.”
He frowned. “Shep?”
“Yeah, that’s what I’m calling you. You all remind me of the Three Stooges.” I looked around the desert. “Which way?”
Shep pointed northeast. “About five hundred yards that way.”
“Cool,” I said and slapped a hand on his shoulder, squeezing tight enough to make the man wince. I pointed my free hand at the truck. A purple stream of smoke drifted from my fingertips and surrounded the truck. Once it covered completely, the truck faded, camouflaging into the desert landscape. “Hang on.”
He yelped when we first ported, but the scream disappeared in molecule dust as we left it behind and appeared in a small clearing, which was where a rattlesnake just happened to be sunning itself. Shep jumped and let out another yelp.
“Really, dude? You hunt vamps and you’re afraid of a fucking rattlesnake?” I shook my head and walked on by the reptile. It ignored me, even though his rattle was going something fierce. Likely because there was a human in its vicinity. “Come on. I ain’t got all fucking day.”
Shep caught up to me after taking a wide berth around the snake. “It’s just over there,” he said as he pointed to the chain link fence.
“I got eyes,” I snapped. Once we’d approached the fence, I placed my right hand over it as Shep stepped back. That made me grin, and it told me the fence was electrified without feeling the pulse of electricity push against my skin. I reached back and pulled a blade from my back, beneath the black leather vest I wore.
“What’re you gonna do with that?”
“Open sesame,” I said and drew the blade against the links in a circle big enough for one man to enter. Sparks flew damn near everywhere, but there weren’t any alarms, so I didn’t give a shit. If I didn’t have Shep with me, I’d have just ported. Damn humans always slowed me down, which was the reason I worked alone most of the time. Hell, even some vamps slowed me down.
“Damn,” Shep said and took a step forward again.
I stepped back and extended my left arm. “After you, Shep.” He swallowed, like he didn’t trust what I’d done. “What’s the matter, afraid you’re gonna fry? Look—” I reached through the hole and waved my arm around. “—it’s all good, man. Step through. I’ll be right behind you.”
“No doubt where you can pull my spine out as I’m walking,” he mumbled. Humans can do that all they want, but around vamps, it didn’t matter. We can hear everything.
I followed Shep to one of the smaller buildings. It reeked of death. Not the kind associated with humans. No. I’m talking about immortal death, which you’d think would be damn impossible, since the whole immortal thing factored in. The thing was, I’d learned that no vampyre was ever immortal. No Dracove, that was. Dasul, like Mahlon was, oh hells yeah. Those were the true immortals. But you know, since Mahlon died not so long ago, I guess that wasn’t true either.
The immortal death that climbed into my nostrils belonged to Seth, which meant they hadn’t gotten rid of his body yet. It wasn’t like they could throw us in direct sunlight and have us incinerate, thus destroying the evidence. Nope, decapitation and burning the body the same way you’d burn a human body was the only way.
I heard gunshots go off and pushed Shep against the wall. When I looked at him with a question in my eyes, he shrugged. He’d been with me the whole time, so he didn’t know what it was. I clutched my gun tight and pulled Shep along the wall by his shirt until I got to the corner and could peer around.
Shouts echoed around the compound with several men running toward the same spot. I focused on the area more closely and saw two females right before they vanished into thin air.
“Shit.” I think my girl just left the compound, but I didn’t know who the fuck she was with or where in the hell she went. I needed to check the building first, before porting off to everywhere I could think of. “Shep, where’s the entrance to this place.”
“Round the corner, about a hundred feet down.”
“Thanks,” I said and vanished. I knew leaving him there could seriously jeopardize me, but I’d discovered throughout all of this shit that when it came to Nico, I’d fucking risk my life to save her. Hell, I’d probably die for her. And I fucking hated that I felt that way about a female.
The moment I appeared and saw vines growing out of the bowels of the building, I knew exactly who Nico was with and potentially where they went.
Looked like I was heading to Ireland after all. Hey, I could kill three birds with one stone there: find Nico, find Trystan, and take the latter to Cianán.